Muay Thai, or Thai Boxing, is the national combat sport and cultural martial art of Thailand. First developed hundreds of years ago, it is a form of close-combat that utilizes the entire body as a weapon. This discipline is known as the "art of eight limbs”, as it is characterized by the combined use of fists, elbows, knees, and shins.
Continue reading to learn how the 8 limbs are utilized as weapons in this spectacular sport!
The Art of Eight Limbs
The fists are the most used weapons in Muay Thai, but body punching is used less in this practice than most other combat sports to avoid exposing the opponent’s head.
The technique and execution of punches are similar to punches in boxing, but the difference comes from the manner and form in which they are thrown- which is largely due to the footwork and guard form.
Punches used in Muay Thai include:
The use of elbows in Muay Thai is very unique. Many other martial arts and combat sports like Karate and Taekwondo may include elbow strikes, but none of them allow for elbows to be used as often as Muay Thai, especially in competition.
The elbow strike is considered to be the most dangerous form of attack in the sport. When executed correctly, elbows have the ability to cause severe cuts across the face or even end a fight altogether.
Elbow Strikes Used in Muay Thai:
Knees are also uncommonly utilized in the world of Muay Thai. They are one of the most lethal and important aspects of the sport as they have the potential to knock an opponent completely and utterly unconscious.
Knee Strikes Used in Muay Thai:
Many say that the shins and feet are the foundation of Muay Thai. The two most common kicks used are known as the thip (foot jab) and the te chiang (kicking upwards in the shape of a triangle cutting under the arm and ribs), or roundhouse kick. The Thai roundhouse kick uses a rotational movement of the entire body and has been widely adopted by practitioners of other combat sports.
Thai boxers are trained to always connect with the shin as the foot contains many fine bones and is much weaker. A fighter may end up hurting himself if he tries to strike with his foot or instep. Shins are trained by repeatedly striking firm objects, such as pads or heavy bags.
Kicks Used in Muay Thai:
Are you interested in trying Muay Thai for yourself? Please visit our website or give us a call at 480-382-8259 to schedule a complimentary session!